Writer-director Shawn Ku wowed the Sundance Film Festival with his student short film, Pretty Dead Girl, which went on to win awards at festivals throughout the world. It is currently being developed into a full-length stage production with the Araca Group (Urinetown, Wicked).
He was signed to direct at Warner Bros while still a student at USC Film School and was later nominated for a DGA Award for his work as director and co-choreographer of MTV’s “The American Mall” (starring The Vampire Diaries’ Nina Dobrev), by the producers of the High School Musical trilogy. He has worked with such respected producers as Marc Platt, Michael London and Christine Vachon.
Shawn earned his undergraduate degree in chemistry from Harvard University, but left the sciences to become a Broadway performer in Tony Award-winning shows Fosse, Miss Saigon, and The King and I, among others. As an actor, he won a Jury Prize at AFI FEST for his performance in the lead role of the internationally acclaimed feature Samsara, which premiered at the 2001 Toronto International Film Festival on 9/11. Shawn returned to TIFF with his feature directorial debut, Beautiful Boy (starring Maria Bello and Michael Sheen), which won the International Federation of Film Critics’ FIPRESCI Prize there and the Gryphon Award for Best Film at the Giffoni Film Festival.
View samples of Shawn Ku’s work here.